The Crusade reported that after an out-of-state brother visited a W.V. lodge and spoke in support of Haas' agenda (which after being approved by vote of the brethren was "dumped" by a later grand master), a "secret" letter has gone out from Montgomery to lodge Masters across the state dictating what can and cannot be discussed in lodge meetings. The Crusade says that the letter also warns Masters that they cannot reveal the contents or even the existence of the letter.
Bro. Chris at Freemasons for Dummies has weighed in with his own commentary on this matter, calling it a "Masonic crisis."
I think every free-thinking, freedom-loving Free-Mason should weigh in on this matter. If what is being reported is true, Masonry is truly diseased. As the Crusade writes, "we cannot let Charlie's mockery of real Masonic Principles go unanswered."
As we yammer and yaw about sometimes meaningless Masonic things on this blog and elsewhere, the very core of Masonic principles is being challenged in most unmasonic ways in West Virginia. A real revolution, far bigger than the troubles we've seen in Georgia, Alabama, Arkansas, etc., is on the horizon, if not already taking place.
One thing that we inherited from British Masonry that strikes me as wrong is the idea that a grand master and a grand lodge are omnipotent and "infallible." Freemasonry is a fraternity, not a kingdom, and Freemasons are free citizens and brothers, not subjects. The line of succession in grand lodges is not unlike the monarchy in England, where the crown is handed down based on heredity. This "right of succession" was displayed almost arrogantly at the Georgia Grand Lodge I attended last fall. The new grand master, while introducing the junior grand officers, repeatedly referred to one man or another as his "Masonic son" or "Masonic grandson." Short of death, nothing will stop the line of succession, and nothing will ever change. "Election" of grand officers is a mere rubber-stamping by timid subjects, not votes by free men or Free Masons.
To the brothers in West Virginia, I have said:
If your Grand Master is indeed telling your lodges what they can and cannot discuss, and forbidding Masters to disclose his communications, then Masonic tyranny and terrorism has truly arrived.I call upon the other 50 grand lodges in the U.S. to take action for the good of Masonry and Masons, and to rein in King Charles' abuse of power. And I call upon all Masons of good and noble character to learn more about what is going on in West Virginia, and to offer your brothers support, relief and brotherly love.
Stand and fight, men. The Masonic world is not laughing at you; we are behind you.
Lately I've been reading Thomas Payne's "Common Sense." It is said that in early 1776, even the staunchest loyalist couldn't read this tract to the end without being persuaded to becoming pro-independence. Perhaps something in Payne's words can embolden West Virginia brethren to take action against King Charles' tyranny.
"O ye that love mankind! Ye that dare oppose, not only the tyranny, but the tyrant, stand forth!" — Thomas Payne, "Common Sense"
Image: Thomas Paine
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